Tuesday, November 19, 2019
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Insecurity: Act or resign, senators tell Buhari

Worried by the security challenges in the country, senators yesterday impressed on President Muhammadu Buhari to rise up and act or resign his position.

This is as the Senate resolved to suspend plenary on Wednesday and Thursday next week to convene a national security summit to consider various security challenges in the country and the way out.

The senators accused the President of appointing many incompetent persons into his cabinet, urging that he should sack all members of his cabinet and other appointees who were not living up to their responsibilities.

They also called for the sack or resignation of heads of security agencies who could not live up to expectation in respect of containing the worrisome insecurity in the country.

The senators expressed serious anger and frustration while considering a point of order raised by Senator Shuaibu Lau (PDP, Taraba North), drawing the attention of the chamber to the ongoing killings Taraba State by the Fulani herdsmen.

The Chamber also considered another point of order by Senator Emmanuel Bwacha, who also reported to his colleagues the kidnapping and gruesome murder of a member of the Taraba State House of Assembly, Barr. Hoses Ibi.

Senator Kabiru Marafa had also informed the Senate earlier that after Tuesday’s deliberation by the Senate on Benue killings, he received phone calls from his constituents in Zamfara Central, that some armed men invaded the area and abducted some people.

He said that the kidnappers were demanding ransom for the release of their victims, whom he said were still being held hostage by their captors.

Senator Ben Murray-Bruce lamented that Nigeria was rapidly degenerating into a lawless country, noting that there were no more rules and regulations in the country.

He said that it was time for the President to act or give way if he was incapable of assuming full control of the affairs of the nation, despite being entrusted with public mandate to enforce the law for the good governance of the country.

The aggrieved senator posited that the herdsmen had turned into a terrorist group and should be treated as such by the government, saying that the Police could no longer contain their violent activities in the country as they go about with more sophisticated weapons.

His words: “It seems to me that Nigeria is becoming a lawless country; a country with no rules and regulation, a country where laws are not adhered to; a country where there is no consequence for bad behaviour.

“We have a government, security agents, or we don’t? These are the fundamental issues at stake today because every day since we have gotten here, someone has gotten killed, raped, throat slit, killed at gun point and every day we have resolutions and nothing is being done.

“It is time the Federal Government of Nigeria act because they have been voted into office; they have an executive function to protect the lives and properties in Nigeria.

“It is disgusting to find pregnant women have their stomach slit, unborn babies removed, and if these herdsmen are allowed to rampage, then frankly speaking, they are a terrorist organisation and a terrorist organisation must be dealt with decisively by the military.

“It is no longer a situation where we call on policemen who do not have the arms or training to face folks with AK 47, well trained militia, those who now occupy lands that belong to Nigeria. If we can fight Boko Haram, we can fight the herdsmen.

“If the security agencies cannot do their job, then the leadership must be fired. You are either in control or you are not. The ministers in charge should resign, Nigerians involved should be fired or resign, otherwise they should be impeached.”

Bruce pointed out that the Senate was now acting as it were the executive arm because of the inefficiency of those in the Executive, urging that the President of the Senate should be made the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“It is as if the Senate is now the executive arm of government. That is a fact of life. If that is the case, what are we doing about it? If the people responsible for the protection of lives and proprieties in Nigeria cannot do their job, what happens in civilized countries? They are fired.

“If the Federal Government wants the Red Chamber to become the executive in Nigeria, then let us appoint the Senate President to be the President of Nigeria. Let us do the job of the executive because it doesn’t make any sense.

“If Saraki is the only one interested, let him become the President of Nigeria and that solves the problem. We cannot continue like this. We either fix this problem or everybody should shut up and resign from public office.”

In his contribution, Marafa said: “Zamfara State is now under the control of the militia and the sad thing is that the governor knows the perpetrators of this crime. They move around freely with their arms.”

On his part, Senator Isa Misau accused President Muhammadu Buhari of not doing enough to protect Nigerians against terrorists and all manner of marauders who are killing people every day.

He accused Buhari of appointing incompetent people into his cabinet while the business of government suffered without the President doing anything seriously to save the people from the terrible development.

He lamented that Buhari government was indulging in double standard in his anti-corruption war, noting that the appointment of the Director General of the Nigeria Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ahmed Abubakar, was tainted with nepotism.

According to him, Abubakar did not qualify to be NIA boss because he had failed promotion examination twice and had, because of that, exited the service to save his face.

“Today, the DG NIA that was just appointed, is he qualified to be there? He’s not qualified. This is the person that failed two exams, we know. He failed two exams and just because he is close to people taking decisions, he was appointed,” Misau said.

Misau also noted that there were so many incompetent persons working in the cabinet of Buhari, stating that less than 50 per cent of those in Buhari government were grossly incompetent.

He noted that the people in the cabinet “take decisions anyhow” and asked Buhari to sack his cabinet if he desired to succeed in his administration.

He lamented that the Attorney-General of the Federation was acting contrary to the constitution and nobody had called him to order.

“This Attorney-General is becoming a nuisance, going to court to stop Maina (probe) and we are still here. The IG came here with a lawyer that he is not going to answer any question from the Senate. After that, he went to institute an order restraining Senate from investigating him,” he said.

He alleged that a minister in Buhari’s cabinet was doing everything possible to get the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, removed at all cost.

“When we were on holiday, so many people were going behind that they should try and remove the Senate President. And it was a minister that was spearheading that thing. What is the reason? They said that the Senate President would leave APC that they should create problems for him (Saraki). What kind of country is this? Everything is about religion, about tribe,” Misau said.

Saraki said that the chamber would suspend plenary on Wednesday and Thursday next week to convene a national summit where all these issues would be handled.

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